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Scotland U19s 'can reap benefits of hosting Euros'

The national team kick off their European Championships in Paisley on Tuesday.

Scotland Women's Under 19 head coach Pauline Hamill has said hosting this summer's European Championships will provide a priceless experience for her players as they move forward.

The young Scots face France in Paisley tomorrow in their first match in the tournament and are hoping they can capitalise on the raised profile of the game following the senior team's performances at the Women's World Cup last month.

Hamill said there is real excitement about hosting the tournament and being up against elite sides from across the continent to learn from competing at the highest level.

"It's fantastic," she said. "When you look at these young players getting the chance to play in a home tournament against the best teams in Europe and the world, I'm not sure that there's anything better for a young player.

"For us, as a nation, to be able to host is superb.

"I think you have to have perspective. they've trained really hard, the group are really improving.

"We want them to take their development and improvement into the tournament and just play the best they can play in each match."

After facing France, who have won the tournament four times, Scotland face Norway and Netherlands. Hamill believes each game will be a tough test but one to relish.

"Every game is huge because they are almost equal opposition in terms of the level of opponent," she said.

"For us, we focus very much on ourselves because we want to maximise what we can do.

"France are excellent. that game is going to be so tough and we know that. However, we have to give our players the best chance to be successful on the pitch. That's what we'll do."

With high calibre opposition in every game, Hamill didn't make any predictions about the team's chances but said development and hitting a level of performance were the important things to take from the games.

"It's absolutely managing expectations and I think that's key," she said. "We're in a competition with five of probably the seven best teams in the world. For our players that's an amazing thing to experience.

"But having said that, we want to show that we can compete. We have aspirations to do well in terms of our performances. 

"That's our focus, to focus on us and what we can do, while recognising the tough opponents we're playing against."

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